Dutch debtors to get 6 month payment break

The Netherlands plans to give people who are deeply in debt a six month break in which they don't have to make payments, won't get reminders for payments and won't get a visit from a bailiff, State Secretary Jetta Klijnsma of Social Affairs and Minister Ard van der Steur of Security and Justice announced on Tuesday, NU reports.

With this break the government wants to give debtors the opportunity to catch their breath, create some order and make a plan to pay off their debt. During the six month period, income above the minimum standard will still be put aside for eventual debt repayment.

The government hopes to implement the measure by January 1st next year. The proposal was drawn up in consultation with debt relief association NVVK, bailiffs, the association of Dutch municipalities VNG and the four major cities.

The Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, long insisted that a plan be made to give people in debt a breather. The ChristenUnie and the CDA eventually gave up on waiting for the State Secretary and submitted their own legislative proposal. But during a Kamer debate last month, Klijnsma promised to set up a proposal as soon as possible.